Obama signs law ordering US military to let gays serve

US president signs "don't ask, don't tell" repeal, says "valor and sacrifice in the armed forces are no longer defined by sexual orientation."

December 22, 2010 17:29
Obama gives a thumbs up

Obama thumbs up smiling 311. (photo credit: AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

WASHINGTON  — US President Barack Obama on Wednesday signed a landmark law ordering America's armed services to let gay men and women serve openly for the first time.

Surrounded by senior military officials and members of Congress, Obama said he is proud to sign the bill, which he says will strengthen national security.

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In signing the law Obama fulfilled a campaign pledge and notched the second of three expected victories in what's turned out to be — for Obama — a surprisingly productive closing weeks of the current session of Congress.

0bama said at the signing ceremony that valor and sacrifice in the armed forces are no longer defined by sexual orientation.

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